Buglife transform industrial sites for wildlife in Wales

Wednesday 17th July 2013

Former industrial sites in Swansea and Neath Port Talbot will be improved for bugs such as the butterfly Dingy skipper and Brown-banded carder bee thanks to work by Buglife.


Thursday 11 April 2013

Four ex-industrial sites at Bryn Tip and Nant-ewlaeth (nr Cymmer) in Neath Port Talbot; and Kilvey Hill and Pluck Lake in Swansea will be surveyed and managed for invertebrates and other wildlife. Buglife will also be working with Tata Steel's integrated steelworks site at Port Talbot, to demonstrate how industry and wildlife can work side by side.

Clare Dinham, Buglife Project Officer said ‘The heavy metal and mining heritage of South Wales, subsequent dereliction and natural regeneration back to wilder plant cover has left a legacy of superb habitat for rare and endangered bugs. With careful management and restoration Buglife and partners hope to maximise the potential of these sites to create havens for wildlife'.

Work can go ahead thanks to a grant of £101,287 from WREN, a not for profit business that awards funding generated by landfill tax by sites owned by FCC Environment, to community, environmental and heritage projects countrywide.

Buglife will be working with Neath Port Talbot Council, Swansea Council, Tata Steel (Port Talbot) and local conservation charities to survey and manage the brownfield sites for wildlife.

Clare said ‘The first stage is to survey the sites to find out what wildlife lives there. We will be working with local experts from April to September this year to record invertebrates, reptiles and plants. The results of the surveys will help us decide how best to manage the project sites for wildlife'.

The majority of practical conservation work is set to be carried out over the next two winters and is likely to include scrub thinning, the creation of bee banks, bare ground and areas of wildflower meadow.

Clare said ‘There will be many opportunities to become involved with the project such as attending a wildlife walk, training workshop or Bioblitz, or assisting with habitat management and surveys.'.